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Muslims happy in Britain, survey finds

08 March 2024

Alamy

Muslim men at prayer in the Cambridge Central Mosque last Saturday

Muslim men at prayer in the Cambridge Central Mosque last Saturday

MOST British Muslims who took part in a survey agreed that Britain was a better place in which to practise their faith and be part of the wider community than most other European countries.

A survey of 1001 Muslims in England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland was conducted between 22 January and 2 February by Techne UK, on behalf of the Institute for the Impact of Faith in Life (IIFL). The responses were analysed against a general-population survey, conducted simultaneously, of 1012 respondents.

The findings were published this week. Of British Muslim respondents, 86 per cent agreed that living in Britain offered opportunities to progress in life, compared with 70 per cent of the general population. A similar proportion of British Muslims (83 per cent) agreed that the nation was a better place than most European states in which to practise their faith while being involved in wider public life — rising to 87 per cent for Muslims living in London. More than half of the Muslim respondents felt a strong sense of belonging in their local community.

More than two-thirds believed that people had a duty to marry and raise children to make positive contributions to society. This was compared with 43 per cent of the general population. Three-quarters (75 per cent) of the Muslim respondents reported giving to charity in the past year, compared with 68 per cent of the general population.

The findings, set out in a report by Dr Rakib Ehsan and Dr Jake Scott, are also based on 28 in-depth interviews, and ten case studies of British Muslim charities across the country.

Dr Ehsan, a senior research associate for IIFL, said that the findings showed that “the vast majority of British Muslims believe that their country is a land of opportunity and generosity. Their positive views should better inform the national conversation on equality in modern Britain, which is increasingly dominated by tribal activists who thrive on the currency of victimhood. This should be a source of national pride in post-Brexit Britain.”

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